Meech Lake Accord, set of constitutional reforms designed to induce Quebec to accept the Canada Act. The Accord's five basic points, proposed by Quebec Premier Robert Bourassa, include a guarantee of Quebec's special status as a "distinct society" and a commitment to Canada's linguistic duality. Other provisions increase provincial powers in immigration, provide for provincial input in appointing supreme court judges, restrict federal spending power, and restore the provincial right to constitutional veto. Prime Minister Brian Mulroney and all the provincial premiers agreed to the Accord on Apr. 30, 1987, though strong doubts were expressed by the premiers of Ontario and Manitoba, and by several women's and Native American rights groups. The Accord died on June 22, 1990, when Newfoundland and Manitoba failed to approve it, leading many Quebeckers to reconsider independence (see Bouchard, Lucien).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.